Frankly i never believed too much that Pirlo is destined to be a great coach (but then i didnt believe in Zidane either). Watercarriers and workaholic players such as Conte and Deschamps have the traits of a good coach, because they have made their career based on abilty to read and intercept the opposition plans and desire to work hard for the team. The skill, required to make a great 50m pass is not what makes you a good coach. Pirlo is not a moron, so who knows maybe he can turn the things around, but that desire to invent something better than the wheel is a sign of arrogant incompetence, som im not optimistic.
Zidane is really the only exception to the notion that very talented players tend to make bad coaches.
I was hoping Pirlo would somehow come good based on his resume as a top player and because frankly we just needed him to exceed expectations and norms for this to work.
Predictably it hasn't because the reality came crashing down on us that he woefully out of his depths, and this was always going to be the most likely scenario. So let's start being serious and bring in a proper coach.
I really don't want to just throw away trying to win a historic 10th Scudetto in a row just to give this ill-advised experiment more time to fail and put us in an even greater hole for us to dig ourselves out of.
It's odd with Maradona. Such a genius on the pitch, but not the brightest off it. I wonder what his IQ is (or was, before age and drugs and alcohol had taken too much of a toll). Surely not r-word level, since I do believe it takes some intelligence to do what he did (and I would include the charisma and leadership he showed at times in the locker room and in interviews). But how much
I guess one very important quality to succeed is a deep understanding of the different phases and positioning. Then it seems like those players who had 90+ awareness as part of their game have the advantage (e.g. Guardiola). The "school" where they spent a lot of time developing and the discipline would obviously be huge and that would explain why the Total Football dudes would have an advantage (Cruyff, Rijkaard).
That seems logical to me but then we must be careful to not conflate awareness with vision. Vision can operate without the deep knowledge of a system at work. So Maradona, for example, can have great vision but may not be so good at implementing a system.
There is a book by Vialli (co-authored with Gabriele Marcotti) which contains a lot of interviews with various coaches. One noted how it is often a question of mentality. Not mental strength or ability to deal with pressure, but the ability to transition from that very singular mindset as a player of focusing on your own ability, responsibilities, etc, to thinking on those terms as a collective.
Certainly, a higher base level of tactical awareness would seem necessary for top coaches these days (same for TV pundits, btw). In the First Division in England in the 1980s, everone played the same 4-4-2 anyway. Ball to the flank, men in the box, and so on.. Even in Italy it was relatively simple when everyone played Zona Mista.
The Italian Job, I think Marcotti and Vialli called the book. It was quite "advanced" for its time, as I recall. That was before the days of youtube tactics channels, and when Football Manager was less complicated. (not saying the book can't be interesting today, e.g. the man management stuff you refer to, the different cultures etc.)